What Does an Animal Behaviourist Do?

Animal behaviourists play a crucial role in comprehending and resolving prevalent behavioural issues across various animals. Their role extends beyond mere observation, as they are dedicated professionals working towards enhancing animal well-being through analysing and modifying behaviours. This article delves into the duties, prerequisites, and responsibilities of becoming an animal behaviourist.

Animal Behaviourist Job Overview

As an animal behaviourist, the primary objective is to monitor, evaluate, and influence animal behaviours. This involves working with various species, from domesticated pets to exotic zoo creatures. To improve animals’ quality of life, behaviourists require a comprehensive understanding of animal psychology and the ability to devise effective and efficient intervention tactics.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities of an Animal Behaviourist Job:

  • Behavioural Assessment: Conduct thorough assessments of an animal’s behaviour, identifying problematic patterns or issues.
  • Observation: Understand animal behaviour by observing them in their natural environment or a controlled setting.
  • Intervention Planning: Develop interventions tailored to each animal’s needs, considering environment, diet, and social interactions.
  • Training and Conditioning: Implement behaviour modification techniques using positive reinforcement to address behavioural problems and train animals.
  • Client Education: Educate animal owners on understanding and managing their pets’ behaviour, guiding effective training methods.
  • Collaboration: Work closely with veterinarians, animal trainers, and other professionals to create holistic solutions for animals with complex behavioural issues.

Animal Behaviourist Job Requirements

  • Education: Typically, a degree in animal behaviour, zoology, or a related field is required.
  • Experience: Prior experience working with a variety of animals is essential. Practical experience in behavioural assessments and interventions is highly valued.
  • Analytical Skills: Strong analytical skills are crucial for understanding and interpreting animal behaviour patterns.
  • Communication Skills: Efficient communication is essential for collaborating with clients, colleagues, and other professionals.
  • Empathy: Deep empathy towards animals and a genuine passion for improving their welfare.
  • Patience: Dealing with behavioural issues may take time, requiring a patient and persistent approach.
  • Ethical Practice: Adhere to ethical standards in animal care and treatment, prioritising the well-being of the animals.


In summary, an animal behaviourist is a dedicated professional committed to enhancing animals’ lives by gaining a profound understanding of their behaviours. Through the amalgamation of education, expertise, and a compassionate approach, these experts significantly contribute to the pleasure and well-being of the animals under their care.

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